Politics, Business & Culture in the Americas

El fútbol que nos hace soñar (y matarnos)

Cerca de 57 mil colombianos han acompañado desde las tribunas a la Selección de fútbol y se han deleitado con los 11 goles que tienen al país en los cuartos de final de la Copa del Mundo, mientras un sentimiento de euforia e histeria colectiva inunda a la patria. Grandes empresarios y grandes endeudados que … Read more


In World Cup, on to Round Three…

With the second round of the World Cup soccer tournament concluded the main storylines have been the success of teams from the Americas, the early exit of previous stalwarts England, Italy and Spain, the relatively high number of goals, and—at least in the United States—the sudden realization that soccer actually has a strong and passionate … Read more


Mexican Culture and the World Cup

The World Cup is a lot more than just soccer. It is a global celebration and in many regards, a showcase of cultures, not just from the host country but from all nations participating in it. While Mexico did not become the World Cup soccer champion in Brazil, international media sources did call it the … Read more


Monday Memo: Varela in Panama – Argentine debt – ELN attack – Costa Rica and Colombia World Cup Firsts – Amado Boudou

This week’s likely top stories: Juan Carlos Varela takes office as Panama’s new president; Argentina negotiates a settlement with holdout creditors; the ELN attacks in Arauca; Costa Rica and Colombia advance to the World Cup quarterfinals for the first time; Argentine Vice President Boudou faces charges. Juan Carlos Varela inaugurated in Panama: Panamanian President-elect Juan … Read more


World Cup 2014: The “Zebras” of the Americas

When a soccer match ends in a surprising or unpredictable way, Brazilians often use the popular expression “deu zebra” (“it was a zebra”). The term applies to games where supposedly weaker teams beat stronger ones, or when key players are outperformed on the field.  Like the animal, “zebras” are fairly rare. But in this World Cup, … Read more


Is the U.S. Missing a Free Kick at the World Cup?

The World Cup offers something of a free kick for soccer diplomacy, which some observers say U.S. President Barack Obama is failing to capitalize on. While many nations, from Germany to Russia, are sending their leaders to Brazil to make a diplomatic appearance, Obama is staying home. So is First Lady Michelle Obama and their … Read more


For the U.S., a Tie Against Ghana is as Good as a Loss

For Team U.S.A., a tie might as well be a loss in today’s World Cup match against Ghana, who knocked the Yanks out of the 2010 World Cup during overtime in the Round of 16. But today’s match is about more than payback. Ghana and the U.S.,  along with Portugal and Germany, are in Group G, … Read more


World Cup 2014: The Whole World Is Watching

Today, the eyes of the world will descend upon Brazil as the country hosts the opening match of the 2014 World Cup.  The Brazil v. Croatia match will be held in São Paulo’s new Arena de Corinthians, known by its nickname “Itaquerão.” The opening ceremony will include performances by Jennifer Lopez, Pitbull and local artist Claudia … Read more


Screening of “Disruption” Documentary in New York City

On May 13, director Pamela Yates, producer Paco De Onís, and editor Peter Kinoy launched a special screening and discussion of their documentary film “Disruption” at ThoughtWorks’ Technology Salon in New York City. “Disruption” takes the filmmakers’ body of work, which has long focused on human rights and transitional justice, in a new direction. The … Read more


Argentina Creates Culture Ministry

Argentina’s official government gazette announced yesterday the creation of a cultural ministry department to be headed by folk singer and composer Teresa Adelina Sellares, also known by her stage name, Teresa Parodi.                     Prior to the creation of the Cultural Ministry, the government cultural department was run through the Secretary of Culture, Jorge Coscia, who resigned … Read more


Ahora Sí Llego

Halfway between the Cuban towns of Martí and Baracoa, Cuban and Italian filmmakers José Balboa and Desiderio Sanzi plug a hole in the gas tank of their Russian Ural sidecar motorcycle with a glob of powdered deodorant and super glue. It’s a temporary fix for the machine that will carry them across all 15 Cuban … Read more


10 Things to Do: Manaus, Brazil

Manaus, the historic gateway to Brazil’s Amazon, melds a colorful past and a bustling entrepreneurial culture with its status as a symbol of biodiversity. Just beyond the riverport and the spectacular architecture of the city center is the rainforest that has lured adventurers and dreamers for centuries. Now, Manaus, home to nearly 1.8 million people, … Read more

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Crop Over

The island of Barbados’ economy has evolved from its mono-crop dependency in the eighteenth century as the world’s largest sugar producer. But every summer, the island pays tribute to this legacy with a revival of a three-centuries-old harvest festival known as Crop Over. Originally, the festival was meant to cap the long sugar cane growing … Read more


World Cup Update

With preparations for the 2014 FIFA World Cup nearing completion, soccer fans across the region can turn their attention to what really matters: their national team’s chances of winning on the world’s biggest stage. Although European teams have won four of the last six competitions, South American teams have historically fared far better when playing … Read more

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